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Organising in Home Care What can be learned from working in highly gendered work arenas?

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Presentation on theme: "Organising in Home Care What can be learned from working in highly gendered work arenas?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Organising in Home Care What can be learned from working in highly gendered work arenas?

2 BRISTOL T&G members 600 workers Part time 598 women, 2 men Average age early 50s

3 Why might unions be interested in Home care? Social care and logistics fastest growing industrial sectors Atypical union members Riddled with issues US examples in social care Low paid, poorly organised Most highly gender segregated of occupations in public sector Supra-local – rooted in the community

4 Does gender matter in organising? Do we need to take the same approach in organising male and female workers? what gives these workers power? how can we build leverage against the employer? how can we give these women confidence that they can win? how do we give them control of the campaign?

5 Gender is a key industrial issue Home care work is womens work Equal pay claims are driving privatisation Fragmented feminised work patterns prevail

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8 Cross party campaigning – appealing to left and right Building alliances with community groups Mainstreaming gendered, relational arguments Mobilisation was critical Physical presence of hidden workers Utilising workers resources Strong media presence Qualitative over quantitative justice

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14 Gendered organising? Strike action can harm women workers Non-hierarchical organisational form Engaging with emotions built confidence Fluidity of leadership Gendered, Relational arguments Women can win at work – we need to give a high profile to examples


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